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Weekend finale at No. 2 Florida

BY ANDRES FOCIL
Weekend finale at No. 2 Florida

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Coming off a four-set victory at South Carolina to open the weekend, the University of Arkansas volleyball team next faces No. 2 Florida Sunday afternoon. First serve of the Southeastern Conference matchup is scheduled for a 12:30 p.m. (CT) start at the O’Connell Center in Gainesville.

In its last outing, Arkansas (9-7, 3-2 SEC) downed South Carolina in four sets behind a trio of double-digit kill performances. Jasmine Norton notched her fourth consecutive double-double effort with 19 kills and 19 digs while Kelli Stipanovich and Amanda Anderson posted 15 and 10 kills, respectively. Defensively, libero Brook Fournier had 15 digs and Hayley Koop tallied a career-best 10 digs. At the net, Janeliss Torres-Lopez led the team with seven total blocks.

Norton leads the Razorbacks this season with 3.94 kills per set, followed by 2.24 k/s for Stipanovich. After posting a .368 hitting percentage against South Carolina, Anderson carries a team-high .307 figure on the season. Torres-Lopez averages 1.31 blocks per set to pace Arkansas’ defensive charge. Behind the block, Fournier has 3.24 digs per set. As a team, the Razorbacks are holding their conference opponents to a .186 hitting percentage, the second-lowest mark in the SEC.

Arkansas has two wins against Florida in the all-time series between the two teams, the last being a five-set triumph in Fayetteville during the 2007 season. In last season’s meetings, the Gators came away with two straight-set victories. As the nation’s second-ranked team, Florida is the highest-ranked opponent for the Razorbacks since 1996, a meeting with then-No. 1 Florida in the SEC Tournament.

Florida (11-1, 4-0 SEC) picked up a four-set win over No. 16 LSU in its last match. Offensively, the Gators are led by setter/opposite hitter Kelly Murphy. The preseason All-SEC performer leads her team with 3.13 kills per set and a .371 hitting percentage. Utilizing the 6-2 system, Murphy (5.33 a/s) and Chanel Brown (5.22 a/s) direct Florida’s offense. Defensively, the Gators average 2.77 blocks per set and are holding opponents to a .170 hitting percentage.

To follow the action in Gainesville, a live audio stream, interactive blog and live stats will be available for fans at ArkansasRazorbacks.com. Sunday’s match will mark the end of Arkansas’ four-match road stretch.

The Razorbacks return to their home court Oct. 8 for a televised match against No. 23 Tennessee. Cox Sports Television (CST) will carry the conference matchup. First serve is scheduled for 7 p.m. (CT) at Barnhill Arena. The match has also been designated as the 1st Annual Razorback Dig for the Cure event, benefitting the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation.



Sports Category : Volleyball (W)